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Gears for the drop gate mechanism at Lock 10 in the Chesapeake and Ohio Canal National Historical Park. This is the third of the Seven Locks. Construction began on the canal in 1828 as a way to ship materials between Georgetown, DC and Cumberland, MD along a largely unnavigable section of the Potomac River. The canal was outcompeted by the railroad and was shut down in 1924 after a damaging flood. In 1971 President Nixon designated the 184.5 miles of canal land as a National Historical Park.